Sempra Energy Gets FERC Permit for Louisiana Natural Gas Storage Facility

Sempra Pipelines & Storage, a unit of Sempra Energy has received authorization from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) to construct and operate its Liberty Gas Storage LLC natural gas storage facility in Calcasieu Parish, La. Sempra Pipelines & Storage owns 75 percent of the project and ProLiance Transportation & Storage, an affiliate of ProLiance Energy, LLC, a natural gas marketing company, owns 25 percent.

The company received FERC authorization to operate the facility under Section 7(c) of the Natural Gas Act, including market-based rate treatment.

"Liberty Gas Storage is on schedule to provide high-deliverability gas storage to the Gulf Coast region, an area that is facing supply shortages and increased price volatility," said George Liparidis, president of Sempra Pipelines & Storage. "The severe impact of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita highlighted the critical need for storage."

John Talley, president of ProLiance Energy, added, ``The Liberty project represents an important step in our commitment to develop energy infrastructure projects to ensure that our customers receive reliable, affordable supplies of natural gas."

Liberty Gas Storage will be located near the town of Sulphur, La., and will provide firm storage and related services to customers transporting natural gas on various interstate pipelines in the region.

The facility, which will provide 17 billion cubic feet (Bcf) of working gas capacity for storage, is expected to be in service in mid- to late-2006. The project also will include surface facilities to allow for a maximum injection of 500 million cubic feet per day and maximum withdrawals of 1 Bcf per day.

Liberty Gas Storage will be connected to the Cameron and Port Arthur Pipelines, two new pipelines under development by Sempra Pipelines & Storage connecting area liquid natural gas regasification terminals to the interstate gas transmission system. The FERC has granted the company a 7(c) operating permit for the Cameron Pipeline. An application for the Port Arthur Pipeline's operating permit was filed with the FERC Feb. 28, 2005.